The grieving family of Nóra Quoirin are entitled to a second post-mortem examination if they request it, a senior Malaysian cabinet minister confirmed last night.
Deputy health minister Dr Lee Boon Chye said that while he had full confidence in the initial post-mortem, which revealed the 15-year-old died from gastrointestinal bleeding brought about by stress and starvation while she was missing in the jungle, the family is welcome to a second opinion by a pathologist.
“It is their right. We are confident in the professionalism of our pathologists. Our confidence is not shaken,” he told the ‘Malaysian Star’ yesterday.
A post-mortem conducted last Wednesday by Kuala Lumpur Hospital pathologist Dr Siew Sheue Feng and Dr Hanif Mohammad of Tuanku Jaafar Hospital found the teenager died from internal bleeding after going missing in the Malaysian jungle for 10 days. It is believed she died around the sixth day after she vanished from the Dusun resort on August 4 on the first morning of a family holiday.
While Malaysian authorities believe that foul play was not a factor in Nóra’s death, her family have insisted throughout the ordeal that she was abducted, as she did not have the physical or mental capacity to wander off on her own due to a congenital brain defect, holoprosencephaly.
The family’s solicitor Charles Morel told the Irish Independent: “There’s no possible definitive conclusion with the first result. We’re waiting for toxicological analysis and pathological tests. The family want to know the truth and it’s not possible to exclude the criminal [involvement] yet.”
Nóra’s body was collected from a hospital mortuary on Saturday and transported under police escort to Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Her parents Meabh, who is from Belfast, and Sebastien, who is French, did not accompany the remains, according to reports.
A spokesman for the Lucie Blackman Trust – which is acting as a liaison between the family and the media and is organising the repatriation of Nóra’s body – was not disclosing any details of the repatriation or funeral arrangements.
However, the family said last week they would be bringing her body home “where she will finally be laid to rest, close to her loving families in France and Ireland”.